Family Handbook

Frequently Asked Questions

Absence/Attendance

Regular attendance is essential for good progress in school. We monitor attendance each day to verify when and why children are absent. A student is required by law to attend school. If they miss a school day or part of the day, for legitimate reasons, a parent or guardian must notify the school. A parent or guardian may seek an excused absence but the school administrator has the right to accept or deny an application for an excused absence.

Examples of excused absences include: Sickness (a doctor’s note may be required) Medical or mental health appointments Religious Holidays Family Emergency

Examples of unexcused absences include: Missing the bus Need of sleep or rest Sporting Events Child is not immunized If a child arrives after 10:00 a.m. or leaves school before 3:00 p.m. they will be considered absent for ½ of the day. Three unexcused tardies will be considered ½ day unexcused absence.

Vacations must be pre-approved by the building administration. Vacations may be considered unexcused if the family has been alerted to an attendance issue or if not preapproved by the building administration. Washington County recommends to school districts to excuse only up to 5 vacation days outside the established breaks in the school calendar. Schools are required to report excessive absences or 3 unexcused absences to Washington County.

We urge you to carefully consider circumstances that keep your child out of school. Regular school attendance is related to the degree of success in school. You will be notified when your child’s attendance records indicate he/she has missed more than 10% of the school days in session. If the absences continue, a doctor’s statement verifying that your child is not to be in school may be required.

Please call the absence line before 9:00 a.m. to report if your child will be late or absent: Oneka: 651-288-1802, Hugo 651-653-2621.

Should we not hear from you by 10 a.m., it is our practice to call your home or work number to determine the whereabouts of your child.

*When bringing your child in late, an adult must sign him/her in at the office.

Arrival & Dismissal

Your child’s school day begins at 8:55 at Hugo and 9:00 at Oneka. For the safety of your child, please do not drop them off before 8:50 at Hugo and 9:00 at Oneka. There is no supervision for students who arrive early. The school day ends at 3:35 at Hugo & 3:45 at Oneka. Most students are provided with bus transportation to and from school.

Student Drop Off and Pick-Up at Hugo & Oneka

Student drop off is located at along the curb in the south parking lot before school hours. Please have your child exit the vehicle on the curbside. If you wish to escort your child into school please park in a designated parking spot and walk with your child into the building. At no time should a student walk across the parking lot without an adult.

When picking your child up at the end of the school day, you MUST park your car in the south parking lot, enter the building and sign your child out with the supervisors in the cafeteria at Oneka and gym at Hugo. At Oneka, cars with infants or day care vans may apply for a curbside parking pass in the office. At Hugo, you must park in a parking spot. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

Health Services

A registered nurse supervises the health aide at both Hugo and Oneka Elementary Schools. Our health aide will dispense medication, determine appropriate action in emergencies, and monitor absences and health concerns of the students.

Attendance Line

Please call our attendance line before 9:00 a.m. to report your child’s absence or tardiness. Please also state the reason for your child’s absence or tardiness: Hugo: 651-653-2621 and Oneka: 651-288-1802

Medication

The health aide must be informed about students taking any medication during the school day. All medication (prescription and over the counter) must be administered in the Health Office.

● Prescription medications must come to school in the original container, correctly labeled by the pharmacist, and be accompanied by notes from you and your doctor. Pharmacists will give two prescription bottles upon request (one for at home and one for at school)

● Over the counter medication (including cough drops) must be accompanied by a note from the parent or guardian. The note should be specific with respect to dosage, time of day, duration, etc... If medication is taken longer than two weeks you must send a note from your doctor.

Vision and hearing Screening

Our school nurse and trained volunteers will conduct vision and hearing screening. Parents will be notified if further testing is suggested.

Bus Policy/Safety

The privilege of riding a school bus requires appropriate behavior. Each bus driver is responsible for the safe transportation of the students on his/her bus. Students must ride their assigned bus to and from school each day and follow these rules:

● Arrive at your stop at least five minutes early

● Stay out of the danger zone

● Follow the driver’s instructions. The bus driver is authorized to assign seats.

● Remain seated at all times with your hands to yourself, face front, and keep the aisle clear

● Keep hands, head, etc… inside the bus

● Be courteous—no profane language

● Eating and drinking are prohibited

● Littering or throwing objects is not permitted Violations of any of the rules shall be reported by the bus driver to the principal.

1st Report: Treated as a warning - the student and parent are notified.

2nd Report: Student will receive an assigned seat on the bus. Parents will be notified that further violations will result in loss of bus privileges.

3rd Report: Loss of bus privileges for five days.

4th Report: Additional violations will lead to additional forfeiture for ten days.

5th Report: Meeting with the parent/guardian. It is possible to have a loss of bus privileges for the remainder of the school year.

If a student misses the bus going home, their parents will be called and asked to provide transportation home.

Buses are filled to capacity. There is no extra room for students going to scout meetings, sleepovers, etc… Students are not allowed to ride a different bus to or from school. In the event of a family emergency a student must have written permission from a parent in advance and have it approved by the principal.

Changes in Family Status (contact info/moving)

Please inform the school of any changes in your family status. This might include a new address, new telephone number (home or work), parent’s occupation, or a change of marital status. This information is necessary for our records in case of an emergency, and it is kept confidential.

Lunch Programs & Breakfast Programs

Hot lunch

Our district provides nutritious meals for our students. The menus, given to each child at the beginning of each month, are planned using federal standards. Lunch costs are $2.70 for students. Students may bring their own lunch to school and buy milk for $0.50 if they choose. Please see that your child’s name is on his/her lunch box and thermos. We ask that no pop be sent for lunch.

Payment

Each student will be assigned a PIN number to use during the year for their account. This number will need to be memorized. After you deposit money into your child’s account, the price of each meal is deducted using their PIN number.

Paying by Check—make check payable to WBL Schools #624 and include student PIN on memo line.

Paying Online—whitebear.feepay.com

Parents - Parents may join their child for lunch any day. We ask that your call the school prior to 9:30 a.m. or send a note with your child in the morning to let us know that you will be coming. The cost for an adult lunch is $4.00.

Recess Policy re: weather/temperature

Students will play outside at noon recess unless:

● The temperature or wind-chill is -10 degrees

● It is raining and/or lightning

● There are other weather conditions which make it unsafe to be outside

● A note from the parent regarding student illness is given to the teacher

● Students not wearing boots will be restricted to the black top when snow is present

Vacations

Parents and guardians need to contact the building administrator to make sure vacations taken do not get marked down as UNEXCUSED on their child’s attendance report. The administrator will look at child’s current attendance report to determine if vacation time will be excused. Because of breaks already periodically scheduled in during the school year, only up to five days total during the entire school year can be excused for vacation(s).

Dress Code for Students

ISD 624 Student Dress & Appearance Policy can be found online at: http://www.whitebear.k12.mn.us/pdfs/school%20board%20policies/504.pdf

Below are the guidelines we have established at Hugo & Oneka Elementary Schools that are supported by the school district policy:

● During cold weather, students should wear hats, mittens or gloves, snow pants, coats, and boots.

● Tennis shoes are required for P.E. class. Rollerblade tennis shoes are not allowed.

● Clothing that presents language or pictures not suitable for a school is not allowed.

● Students are not allowed to wear hats while in the building unless it is a designated day or specifically addressed in the school board policy.

Unnecessary Articles in School

Please do not permit your child to bring unnecessary articles to school, such as toys, trading card, or electronic devices (unless approved by the classroom teacher). The school will not be responsible for these items if they are damaged or lost. Students bringing such items will be asked to leave them in the office. Parents will be contacted and asked to pick up the items at their convenience.